Tuesday, March 26, 2013

A Family of Readers

A Family of Readers

I come from a family of readers. My mother joined the Great Books reading group at Rosenberg Library in Galveston when I was in junior high school. She bought a set of the Great Books for that year. I remember 2 of them well. The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith and a book by Freud but I don't remember the title. Of course, I tried to read them and once I even went with her it the discussion group.  I may not have understood the books but I was comfortable with great books and great ideas from an early age. 

My father was an avid reader too. After his stroke, I carried home many books from the library for him. He was most interested in history, especially World War II.  We all read the newspaper and had a subscription to Newsweek. And we did the crossword puzzle as a group effort every day, always teasing each other as to who was filling in the hard words and leaving the easy ones for others. 

We had an Encyclopedia Britannica Junior. So interesting to just pick a volume and read various entries. JMM had an encyclopedia but his mother bought it in spite of his father's objections and they kept it in the closet where he would read with a flashlight. I don't think they even publish encyclopedias anymore. 

TSM was reading almost before she was out of diapers. She more or less taught herself to read by following along when I read aloud to her.  Her first school frustration was the kindergarten teacher who never caught on to the fact that she already knew letters, numbers, and how to read.  One of our favorite things to do was go to the library and bring home a big bag of books, pile them on the bed, and spend the afternoon reading and eating in bed.
A fun family evening was a run to the bookstore. 

Now that I am retired, one of my great pleasures is having the time to read. 
Typically, I have 3-4 books going at one time. One is usually a science or nature book that I am frequently reading with the Science/Nature group at GoodReads. Another is usually American History or biography.  I almost always have a murder most English under way. And the fourth varies depending on my mood and what good books I've recently heard about.  And speaking of hearing, I love audio books for when I am quilting. I used to listen to them on my way to and from work. You could tell if I had a really good book going because I would drive slower and slower to finish a chapter before pulling into the driveway. 

How fortunate to live in a time and place where books have always been abundant!!

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